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Tips for Moving in with Your Partner
|When you move in with your partner, your fantasy of romantic harmony often gives way to reality when you realize it requires a lot of effort for a peaceful household. Your partner's annoying habits, arguments over bills, and squabbles about chores can escalate to shouting matches and cause pent-up resentment.
If you are considering moving in with your partner, there are certainly many ways to make the transition easier. By preparing in advance and being thoughtful of your partner's feelings, you can maintain a harmonious household and protect yourself in the unfortunate event that things don't quite work out.
Have both names on your lease
If you are moving into a new apartment together, you should have both your names on your rental agreement. This way, if you split, you will both have your rights protected. You will also be able to hold your ex accountable for unpaid rent should he or she leave unexpectedly. A roommate agreement is also helpful to outline conditions--such as who gets to remain in the apartment if you break up, who receives custody of your pets, and how remaining expenses will be paid.
Downsize your stuff
You never realize how much stuff you have accumulated until it comes time to combine it with someone else's stuff. When moving in with a partner, you may realize you just don't have the space for everything--which can cause fights over what stays and what goes. Before moving day, make an effort to go through your belongings and get rid of anything you haven't used in a year. Make compromises when it comes to furniture and decor–even if your partner is the one moving into your apartment, you want him or her to feel at home, too.
Set ground rules
Everyone has pet peeves, so it's best to let your partner know what gets under your skin before you're under the same roof. Communicate openly about little things that annoy you so, you can avoid arguments about it later. If your annoyances conflict--say you hate falling asleep with the TV on, but your partner can't sleep without it--try to compromise. Perhaps you can alternate nights that you have the TV on in the bedroom. Or, if you give in on the TV issue, your partner can budge on another rule you disagreed on.
Split the chores
Make a list of weekly household chores and decide who will be responsible for each task. If you each prefer doing different chores this is an effective tactic, but if you both hate the doing dishes it can be difficult to decide who does them. In that case, taking turns with equally despised chores is a fair way to divide the labor.
Split the bills
Make sure you plan ahead how you will split the expenses. Will you designate different bills for each of you or just split everything down the middle? If you decide to split everything evenly, one of you will still be responsible for handling the payment each month. In this case, be sure that the other is aware of the due dates for all bills and is proactive about contributing his or her share without being prompted.
Have alone time
No matter how much you love your partner, seeing him or her day in and day out can make your relationship feel stagnant, or leave you feeling like you have to compromise your identity. To maintain your sense of self and keep your romance alive, be sure to always set aside ample time for yourself and the things you enjoy.
Don't let the little things get to you
Don't let insignificant (but annoying) habits build up and breed resentment. Learn to let little things go, or at least communicate openly so you don't blow up over it later. Be thoughtful and sensitive of your partner's feelings at all times. Communication, compromise and an open mind will go a long way to ensure that your home is a happy one.
Photo by: Ambro (freedigitalphotos.net)